Agriculture Agroecology - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

1 / 41
About This Presentation
Title:

Agriculture Agroecology

Description:

Agriculture Agroecology – PowerPoint PPT presentation

Number of Views:3451
Avg rating:3.0/5.0
Slides: 42
Provided by: weedecoMs
Category:

less

Transcript and Presenter's Notes

Title: Agriculture Agroecology


1
Agriculture ?Agroecology
  • Bruce Maxwell Perry Miller
  • Department of Land Resources Environmental
    Science

2
Outline
  • What and Where are the jobs in Ag?
  • Where are the degrees in Ag?
  • What are the issues in Ag?
  • Examples of how we work on the issues.

3
Future Jobs in Agroecology
  • People with systems-level knowledge of
    agroecology, will be important for bridging
    environment concerns with production agriculture

4
Jobs in Agroecology
  • Consultants
  • Ag companies
  • Self-employed
  • 3rd party providers for environmental compliance
  • Ag Industry
  • Product development
  • Insurance, Banking
  • Govt Agencies
  • NRCS, FSA, USDA, etc

5
MSU Degrees In Crop Production Agriculture
  • Plant Science and Plant Pathology
  • Crop Science Option
  • Land Resources Env. Science
  • Land Resources Analysis and Management Option
  • Soil and Water Science Option
  • Agricultural Business
  • Agribusiness Management Option
  • Rarm Ranch Management Option
  • Agriculture Education
  • Ag. Ed. Teaching Option
  • Ag. Ed. Extension Option
  • Education
  • Agricultural Operations Technology

6
Agroecology The issue How might we feed the
world in 100 or 1000 years?
7
Conventional Agriculture A. Goals
8
  • The basic practices that generally characterize
    conventional agriculture
  • intensive tillage
  • expansive monoculture crops
  • irrigation
  • application of inorganic fertilizer
  • chemical pest control
  • genetic manipulation of crop plants

9
C. Conventional agriculture may not be
sustainable 1. Soil lost to wind and water
erosion
  •  
  • Half of the water applied in agriculture is not
    taken up by the targeted crop plants.
  • Pollution 28 of 29 cities tested in the Midwest
    (US) had herbicides in their drinking water (EPA,
    1995)
  • High yields have been accomplished through high
    inputs
  • Loss of genetic diversity There are fewer and
    fewer varieties to draw upon for adaptive genes.
  • Loss of local control over agricultural
    production. lt2 of pop. Live and work on farms in
    US
  • Farmers share of profit for crop is declining
    and increasingly dependent on government
    subsidies.

10
  • Sustainability defined (Gliessman, 1998)
  • Agricultural Sustainability would at the very
    least
  • Have minimal negative effects on the environment
    and release no toxic or damaging substances into
    the atmosphere, surface water, or ground water
  • Preserve and rebuild soil fertility, prevent
    soil erosion, and maintain the soils ecological
    health
  • Use water in a way that allows aquifers to be
    recharged and the water needs of the environment
    and people to be met
  • Rely mainly on resources within the
    agroecosystem, including nearby communities, by
    replacing external inputs with nutrient cycling,
    better conservation, and an expanded base of
    ecological knowledge
  • Work to value and conserve biological diversity,
    both in the wild and in domesticated landscapes
    and
  • Guarantee equality of access to appropriate
    agricultural practices, knowledge, and
    technologies and enable local control of
    agricultural resources.

11
The agriculture of the future must be both
sustainable and highly productive.
A more ecological approach to agriculture may
improve our chances at accomplishing the goal.
Agroecology the application of ecological
concepts and principles to the design and
management of sustainable agroecosystems.
Agroecology is a discipline that provides
concepts and principles based on organism-level
interactions that can be used to design
resource-efficient agricultural systems.
12
Agroecology
  • Goals
  • environmentally sound
  • productive
  • economically viable
  • socially just

13
Appreciating the complexity of ecosystems and
managing with them rather than against them
Adaptive Management
Ecology the relationship between organisms and
their environment
Ecosystem a functional system of complementary
relations between living organisms and their
environment, delimited by arbitrarily chosen
boundaries, which in space and time appear to
maintain a steady yet dynamic equilibrium.
14
Ag Sustainability in the northern Great Plains
50
30
Padbury et al. 2002 AJ 94251
15
Unsustainable U.S. Ag
  • Agriculture is in crisis.
  • eroding the foundation (soil, water)
  • Paradigm of maximum output, maximum profit
    requires immense technical toolbox
  • Pesticides, fertilizer, energy costs,
  • irrigation, etc.
  • Recent articles in Nature argued that
  • technical limits to production have been
  • reached

16
U.S. Sustainability - The Hook
  • Through the Farm Bill, U.S. Taxpayers provide big
    share of net farm income
  • During 1999-2001 Program payments gt 100 net
    income for Montana grain growers
  • Food is a lifestyle choice in western societies
  • Consumers demanding that U.S. agriculture be
    conducted in a sustainable manner
  • Wildlife-friendly systems?
  • Global warming
  • Carbon sequestration has united environmental
    groups and traditional soil conservation groups
    to promote conservation tillage

17
The Practical Problem in Montana
  • Frequent summerfallow
  • Tillage
  • Lack of Diversity (Cereal monoculture)

Wheat-fallow strip farming near Three Forks, MT
1999
18
1. Frequent summerfallow
  • Summerfallow has rich history in northern Plains
  • Campbell Soil Culture Manual (1907) preached as
    dry farming bible by railroads when settling
    Montana 1910-1920
  • Practice of summerfallow 95 responsible for
    salinization of northern Great Plains ( 5
    million acres)
  • Many producers think that fallow rests the land
  • In todays economic conditions, fallow is a
    reality
  • How can we make fallow more sustainable?

19
2. Tillage
Liberty Co. Soil Conservation District sign
  • Erosion -
  • Loss of soil organic matter (C and N)
  • gt 200/ac N has been mined from average Montana
    soils
  • Loss of soil structure (infiltration)

Severe wind erosion near Chester, MT 2001
20
  • Water-Use-Efficient No-till Systems
  • Duff layer?
  • Stubble microclimate
  • Rapid infiltration

Wheat field Beach, ND Sept 11, 2001
21
CURRENT USE OF CONSERVATION TILLAGE
  • (http//ctic.purdue.edu)
  • No-till adoption in Montana? CTIC estimates 17.
  • No-till revolution is sweeping the Great Plains
    but Montana lags behind the Canadian prairies and
    the Dakotas
  • Q. Why is the adoption of water-efficient no-till
    systems lagging in the U.S. Northern Plains?
  • 2001 census in Saskatchewan showed
    no-till is the new convention.

22
3. Lack of Diversity (Cereal monoculture)
23
  • Wheat commodities dominate farming systems
  • various spring wheats from 2.0 to 4.0 M acres
  • - winter wheat acreage varies annually between
    1.0 and 2.5 M acres, according to fall planting
    conditions, price prospects
  • barley 0.8 to 1.4 M acres
  • durum 0.1 to 0.3 M acres
  • no other crop had gt 100,000 acres in 2001!

24
  • Crop and livestock enterprises are highly
    specialized and often separate
  • missed opportunity?
  • potential for interfarm cooperation in the same
    locality

25
  • Disease, insect pests take a big chunk out of
    Montanas wheat crop every year

26
Note yield depression for cereals on spring
wheat stubble
27
  • Weed problems
  • annual grassy weeds that mimic wheat growth
    patterns are the main economic targets
  • wild oats, wild millet, downy brome, jointed
    goatgrass, p. darnel
  • herbicide resistance growing in wild oats, wild
    millet, kochia
  • cheap, long-lasting sulfonyl urea (SU) chemistry
    interferes with crop rotations to broadleaf crops

28
  • Your biggest annual cropping expense is for
    grassy herbicides. Has anyone eradicated wild
    oats off their farm? Are your oat problems less
    than they were 10 years ago? (AJ Bussan, 1999)

29
3. Cereal monoculture
  • Simplify mechanized operation
  • Routine pest management
  • Playing the Farm Bill
  • - time-intense operational windows
  • - Pests adapt to simple systems, become expensive
    to manage
  • i.e. Sawfly producers!
  • - Restricted marketing options

30
Special role for Pulse Crops
  • High water-use-efficiency makes grain legumes or
    Pulse crops well adapted to semiarid regions
  • Symbiotic association with N-fixing bacteria
    (rhizobia) eliminates need for N fertilizer
  • Provide rotational benefits to cereal crops
  • Enhance soil microbial activity, quicken soil
    carbon accumulation

Desi chickpea field near Wolf Point, MT
31
N-fixing nodules on legume roots.
32
Central Paradox
  • Can we combine short-term goals for economic
    productivity with long-term goals for
    sustainability?
  • Does agroecology hold the solutions?

33
Turning Ag Green
  • What models exist for more sustainable
    alternative systems?

Continuous crop wheat-lentil system near Havre,
MT
34
Advanced Organic Systems
  • Increased crop diversity (time and space)
  • Enhanced soil biological activity
  • High value market opportunities
  • - caviar crowd?
  • ? Elimination of chemical fertilizers and
    pesticides
  • ? Shunning of transgenic crops
  • High intensity tillage

Clean organic lentil field
35
Alfalfa underseeded in kamut, Big Sandy, MT
36
Advanced No-Till Systems
  • Elimination of tillage
  • Enhanced soil biological activity
  • Increased crop diversity (time)
  • Increased cropping intensity
  • ? Acceptance of transgenic crops
  • ? Reliance on chemical fertilizers and pesticides

No-till lentils direct-seeded in wheat stubble
37
Low-disturbance air drill in stripped wheat
stubble, Pierre, SD
38
Spring wheat seedlings emerging in high density
corn residues. Pierre, SD.
39
Enhanced biodiversity
Earthworm in no-till plots
Bull snake for rodent control on no-till farm
near Hardin, MT
40
Key Question
  • How much reduction in agricultural productivity
    will society accept in return for increased
    sustainability?
  • Reduced supply drives up food costs
  • Incentive to bring marginal land into production
    (Nature 2002)
  • Is this the right question?
  • No-till systems increase productivity

41
Who will find the answers?
Sunset near Moccasin, MT
Write a Comment
User Comments (0)
About PowerShow.com